Ganymede Scale Model

Whole Object Name

Ganymede Scale Model

Collection

Space Oddities

Description

Scale model of Jupiter’s moon Ganymede. It is a 1:100,000,000 scale model, based on an estimate of Ganymede’s diameter to be 5,265 kilometres. Ganymede was first discovered by Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei and is one of Jupiter's four largest moons. Named after their discoverer, the Galilean moons consist of Ganymede, Callisto, Io and Europa in descending size order.

Ganymede is the largest of Jupiter's moons and is also the largest moon in the Solar System - larger even than the planet Mercury. It has a metallic iron core covered in a rocky shell, on top of which is a thick layer of ice. Studies of Ganymede done with the Hubble Space Telescope in 2015 suggest that the giant moon also has a subsurface salt-water ocean, containing more liquid water than is found on Earth.

Like all of the Galilean moons, Ganymede is named after a lover of Zeus - Zeus being the Greek equivalent of the Roman god Jupiter. Johannes Kepler suggested the naming system to Simon Marius who published the four names in his Mundus Jovialis, published in 1614. Marius had discovered the four moons around the same time as, and independently of, Galileo. It took until the twentieth century for these mythologically themed names to be widely adopted, with many other alternatives offered over the years - including Galileo's own suggestions.

Object number

2001-13
  • image Ganymede Scale Model
  • image Ganymede Scale Model
  • image Ganymede Scale Model
  • image Ganymede Scale Model
  • image The Galileo Manuscript - Draft of a letter to Leonardo Donato, Doge of Venice, August 1609, and Notes on the Moons of Jupiter, January 1610. At the bottom of the letter diagrams drawn by Galileo record the position of Jupiter's moons - Credit: Regents of the University of Michigan
  • image This natural colour view of Ganymede was produced by the Galileo spacecraft in 1996 - Credit: NASA/JPL
  • image A mocked up image showing Jupiter with its Galilean moons. From top to bottom, Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto - Credit: NASA/JPL/DLR
  • image Scale model of Jupiter's moon Ganymede, alongside the other three Galilean moon models
  • image Ganymede Scale Model
  • image Ganymede Scale Model
  • image Ganymede Scale Model
  • image Ganymede Scale Model
  • image The Galileo Manuscript - Draft of a letter to Leonardo Donato, Doge of Venice, August 1609, and Notes on the Moons of Jupiter, January 1610. At the bottom of the letter diagrams drawn by Galileo record the position of Jupiter's moons - Credit: Regents of the University of Michigan
  • image This natural colour view of Ganymede was produced by the Galileo spacecraft in 1996 - Credit: NASA/JPL
  • image A mocked up image showing Jupiter with its Galilean moons. From top to bottom, Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto - Credit: NASA/JPL/DLR
  • image Scale model of Jupiter's moon Ganymede, alongside the other three Galilean moon models

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